Wednesday, January 7, 2009

I am a reading machine!

No really, I am. I read 23 books last year which I'm pretty sure is 22 more books than I readin 2007, so hot damn I'm proud of myself. And what are the books that occupied my time you ask? Why of course I want to share and tell you which ones I think you should read and why:

Wicked by Gregory Maguire. As I mentioned last week, Wicked, the musical, was one of my big obsessions in '08, so it came as no surprise that I would want to read the book. However I am still torn about it. It's so drastically different from the musical and dark that I may have to give it another shot in a year or so, but ultimately I liked it.

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseni. LOVE IT. Kite Runner is one of my favorite books so I had to check this one out and I was in no way dissapointed. It was amazing. At times hard to read simply because of how intense the story is, but overall amazing, amazing I say.

My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. Another tough subject read but ohmygoodness amazing. My best friend lent me her copy and insisted I read this book and I'm glad she did. I love how Jodi writes from every characters perspective and has lots of flashbacks to outline such a great story.

Plum Lucky by Janet Evanovich. A quick, funny read as part of the Stephanie Plum novels. A good upper in between such serious books.

19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult. Another tough subject written amazingly. I think I actually liked this one better that My Sister's Keeper. A school shooting is never an easy subject to write about but Jodi captures it all brilliantly. Definitely another serious read, but so worth it to get through.

One for the Money by Janet Evanovich. The first in the Stephanie Plum, bounty hunter, chick lit novels that my mom recommended to me and definitely a quick, funny and easy read in between books.

The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus. I really felt like I was the last female alive to read this book, haha. But I loved it. I had already seen the movie so I sort of knew what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised at how funny it was.

The Devil Wears Prada by Laura Weisberger. Now I had also already seen this movie before reading it so I sort of had an idea about it but I liked it a lot as well. I don't really know much about the fashion world nay from what I see on shows like Top Model and Stylista so it was definitely an eye opener for me, haha.

Two for the Dough and Three to get Deadly by Janet Evanovich. Two more highly entertaining and good quick reads to pass the time.

The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks. Another book I had been meaning to read forever, especially since I love the movie so much. But I must say, I wasn't too impressed. I guess the movie version had been ingrained in me too much because I didn't like the flow of the book that much. However, with that said, it is still a great love story and picturing Ryan Gosling as I read was definitely a plus.

The Wedding by Nicholas Sparks. Who knew there was a follow up book to the Notebook? I sure didn't. But to be honest, I liked it a little bit more. It follows Noah and Ally's daughter and her family and Noah is very present in the story as well. I think this story flowed better and was a little bit more realistic. I say if you've read the Notebook, check it out.

A Million Little Pieces by James Frey. Despite Oprah's outrage and distaste for the man I really liked the book. I thought it was an incredible story that definitely makes you look at yourself and what addiction really means. Definitely a good one.

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. Amazing. Another tough subject read but I couldn't put the book down it was so good.

The Secret Life Bees by Sue Monk Kidd. Another good one. I read the book shortly before I saw the movie and was a fan of both. And I thought the story definitely displayed innocence as well as the harshness of American society.

Four to Score and High Five by Janet Evanovich. Two more incredibly funny stories of Stephanie Plumm and her Jersey girl bounty hunting stories where ultimately a car gets blown up and a hot man is involved, haha.

Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer. Haha. I laugh because I'm afraid every comment will be "We know how much you loved the Twilight series Katelin, get over it already!". But um yeah, clearly my fave four books of the bunch for the year and with my sweet hard back copies I may just have to reread them in '09.

The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold. I went from stories of love and vampires to a story about a woman who kills her mother and the events that follow. Yeah definitely a bizarre switch and I still don't know how I feel about this one.

Q&A by Vikas Swarup. AMAZING. I think this book would be right after Twilight for my favorite of the year. By recommendation of Lauren I picked up this book and could barely put it down. Basically it's the base story for Slumdog Millionaire and it's amazing. So good, so so good. Go out and read it now!

And that my friends is what I read in '08. So what's next for '09 since I have set my goal for 25 books ? Well right now I am reading Alice Sebold's memoir Lucky and next up is James Frey's My Friend Leonard, and then Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. So anything else you think I should add to the ever growing book list?

And what are you reading these days?

happy wednesday!


Auburn Kat said...

You did have a good year of reading. I should have counted how many books I read last year but I didn't.

I think some of my favorites were the Twilight Series and Glass Castle (you have to read this one).

Anonymous said...

Wow! you really are a reading machine. You should totally get the third in the Wicked series for the backburner while you make your way through Son of a Witch. I haven't read it yet b/c I want to begin the series again to refresh :)

Julie Q said...

what?!?! no up to date news coverage on your newest favorite Hollywood Baby? Ms. Affleck #2? I guess it does pay to be on the East Coast and hear things a few hours early ;)

Well anyways, congrats to your new hollywood baby addition!!!

Red Hott Martini said...

Thanks for the book reviews! I am definitely going to read some of them. I just loved The Wedding and the Nanny Diaries!

Amber said...

I love Wicked, The Secret Life of Bees and a Thousand Splendid Suns.

Ashley D said...

Sadly, I am still reading Breaking Dawn. I know, I'm so slow.... but I'm trying to look at it as if I'm savoring up the Edwardness while I can. :)

I'm also doing the Jane Austen book club, so I'll be reading all of her books over the next few months. Right now we're on Sense and Sensibility.

Jane said...

I really need to do better about getting back onto the reading bandwagon. I read Stephen King's memoir (I really recommend it; it's surprisingly good) and the Twilight books last year, but other than that, it was mostly self help books (I need a self help book for quitting self help books), magazines, and blogs.

ria said...

i love the stephanie plum books. i read devil wears prada this year too. i haven't read the nanny diaries. now i feel like i'm missing something ;)

Chelsea Talks Smack said...

woa dude. I'm seriously impressed, I'm going ot take up some of these books....Ive been neglecting my reading completely.

I am reading "the 4 hour work week" though...and it's bad ass.

Though, I'm still working more than four hours.

I'm learning.

Blicious said...


La Petite Chic said...

If you do get back into Wicked, you should read it's sequel, Son of a Witch. I loved them both :)

Mandy said...

Awesome!! I love reading, its one of my favorite pastimes. I have been meaning to read the Secret Life of Bees. I really enjoyed the Janet Evanovitch books too!

Memoirs of a Geisha is a wonderful book! The movie did not do it justice. I also really enjoyed The Other Bolyen Girl by Philippa Gregory.

Anonymous said...

i love the stephanie plum novels! i can sit and read them in a day or two. janet evanovich is up to like, 15 or something - i have a few of the later ones sitting on my bookshelf if you'd like me to send them to you!

i wish i had a joe morelli/ranger problem in my life :)

melissa said...

So many books! Good job! :)
I completely agree with you on 'The Almost Moon' by Alice Sebold. I had pre-ordered it when it very first came out, because I had loved her other books.. and this one just left me a little uncomfortable. Still not sure on my opinion of that book!

alexa - cleveland's a plum said...

i was a serious slacker on the book front this year. horrible.

reading blogs counts right?

Playful Professional said...

I've heard the Glass Castle is great. Oh and well you know I loved Twilight. One of these days maybe I'll write down all of the books I've read. Maybe right now.

A Super Girl said...

I'm reading A Thousand Splendid Suns right now, and 19 Minutes is sitting on my kitchen table waiting to be opened!

Such good choices you made in '08!!

Classy in Philadelphia said...

Congrats, girl! You should definitely read Lauren Weisbergers other two books. My favorite book by her is, "Everyone Worth Knowing." It's great!

Did you write those little synopses after you read them, or did you seriously remember all those things now? I have a list of books I've read this year, but I can't remember what any of them were about. Haha, Maybe I'll do a post with some of my favorites though!

Jaime said...

I read a few of the same books you did in 2008!

The Kite Runner
A Thousand Splendid Suns
My Sister's Keeper
The Lovely Bones
The Almost Moon
The Notebook (liked the movie better)
The Wedding (which I also liked better than the Notebook as a novel)

I read Lucky last year as well, by Alice Sebold, and didn't like it at all. The beginning is better than the rest of the book.

I read a lot more than I thought I did when I think back on all the books I've bought since January, but I can say this: every year I spend more money on books than the year before!

Larissa said...

Glass Castle and Reading Lolita in Tehran are both phenomenal.

Dr Zibbs said...

That's on my list this year. Read more.

Renee said...

I read The Secret Life of Bees today. Seriously, the whole thing, cover to cover. So good. I can't wait to see the movie.

Phil said...

I loved Wicked, and see the book and the musical as two takes on the story rather than being the same (it's kind of obvious, I guess, given how different they are). But each is amazing in its own way. :)

Anonymous said...

I need to get back into the swing of reading! I have a huge stack on my bed.

sarah marie p said...

Wow! That's so awesome! Reading Machine! I really need to get back into reading. For realz!

Bayjb said...

Wow you are a reading machine. Personally, I had a hard time reading 19 Minutes and My Sister's Keeper. I need to take a break from Jodi Picoult.

Kat said...

we read a few of those books for book club. I think I made my 50 books this year, but to be honest, I stopped counting at 20-something mid-year or so. Don't be impressed though, most were business books or book club books ;-)

Wicked: I really, really wanted to like it, but I just couldn't get through it and eventually gave up.

Nicholas Sparks: His books SUCK (he's a pretty horrid writer), but he's amazing storyteller. I love all the moves based on his books.

zandria said...

I've read a few of those on your list, but definitely "A Thousand Splendid Suns" was my favorite. Very, very good book. :)

tinasauers said...

Good for you, reading machine. I have read the first four Harry Potter books so far in 2009. I have ten and eleven year old sons that were interested in them and I wanted to preview them. I know, I am behind the times, but they are surprisingly good. Rowlings is a very imaginative writer and this series has impacted my dreams almost as much as the Twilight series. This to me is the sign of good literature...that they get into your subconsious and you become one of the characters in Sleepy Nighty Time Land.
I think I am going to tally the books that I read this year. I am pretty sure I was over 200 last year, and every year since I read "Lassie" my first full length novel in about 1983. I am a wee bit obsessed about books.

Anonymous said...

Great book choices! Jodi Picoult has got to be my favorite author - she has a new book coming out on March 3, btw, it looks great! You can read an excerpt on her

I also recommend the following -
1. One True Thing by Anna Quindlen
2. In the Woods by Tana French
3. Harvesting the Heart by Jodi Picoult
4. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee (that is, if you aren't already among the few who were not forced to read this in school).

Just some suggestions :) I'm a bit of a book fiend!

Sarai said...

A lot of the books you've read I've read before and loved as well (The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, The Lovely Bones, The Secret Life of Bees). I like Jodi Picoult too, I read Vanishing Acts last month and I found it to be a great story. I'm eager to read more of her books.

Memoirs of a Geisha was a beautiful book. One of my favorites. I recommend White Oleander by Janet Fitch and Carrie by Stephen King.

(Love your blog by the way!)

sarahbelledotcom said...


this is officially going in my starred items, so i can quickly go back when i decide to start that whole 'reading' thing.

muah! thank you for posting.

i've said this before, but the lovely bones is my all time favorite book.

Lauren said...

I'm so glad you liked Q&A! It's definitely one of my top 3 of the year.

I wanted to read 19 Minutes because the subject is really interesting. I was just afraid that it would be too sad. Like The Lovely Bones was for me. My god! I cried!

And I LOVED A Thousands SPlended Suns. I actually think I like it better than The Kite Runner. Regardless, they're both amazing.